UMaine Now: Keep up the health and safety precautions for well-being

Dear University of Maine and University of Maine at Machias community members,

We have come so very far, together, this academic year. Now in the last week of classes, with finals week about to begin and end-of-year gatherings planned, including commencement ceremonies, we need to continue to remain vigilant and keep health and safety in mind for individual and community well-being.

We ask this in light of COVID-19 positivity rates that are rising nationwide and in Maine, and that have begun to increase on University of Maine System campuses, including ours. UMS and the Science Advisory Board are closely monitoring the rates, and following federal and Maine CDC guidance to make health and safety updates, as needed.

With increases in cases, most caused by the highly transmissible Omicron BA.2 variant, we recommend that university community members take prudent health and safety precautions, including mask wearing, handwashing, and social distancing as possible. Under our current UMS guidance, face coverings are required in classrooms, research labs and other academic areas unless waived by faculty members, and our overarching guidance remains that face masks are recommended. Continue to social distance whenever you can and if you are sick stay home and seek medical advice.

Both required and voluntary on-campus COVID-19 asymptomatic testing continues, as well as symptomatic testing. See the testing schedule for both universities below, and know that testing is available to our community members on any UMS campus.

Note, too, that students need to be sure that their COVID vaccinations are “Up to Date” as defined by the CDC, or that they have requested a University of Maine System-approved exemption by the start of any Summer University session or the fall semester in which they will be in person. If you haven’t been boosted, it’s a requirement here at UMS campuses so please plan to do so as soon as possible. Boosting works!

Please do all you can to stay healthy during this very busy end of the spring semester.

All the best to our students and faculty during finals week.

Sincerely,

Joan Ferrini-Mundy
President


The University of Maine Return website is an online resource for all COVID-19-related guidance for both our universities. For questions, email umaine.alerts@maine.edu.

Reminders and Notices

Face covering guidance: Face coverings are required in all classrooms, research spaces and instructional areas unless the requirement is waived by a faculty member. UMS health and safety guidance also requires face coverings for indoor public events with 75 or more persons, unless proof of COVID-19 vaccination or a negative test result within 72 hours is required. Any UMaine or UMaine Machias event organizer has the option to require face coverings.

On-campus COVID-19 testing schedule: UMaine Machias asymptomatic testing in Reynolds Center: Tuesday, 9 a.m.–noon; Thursday, 2–5 p.m. At UMaine, asymptomatic test dates in Estabrooke Hall: Monday–Thursday, 8:30 a.m.–5 p.m.; Wednesday also 6:30–8:30 a.m. All UMaine and UMaine Machias students and employees, regardless of vaccination status, are encouraged to participate in campus-based COVID-19 testing. Learn more about self-administered on-campus COVID-19 tests if you are symptomatic. Shield T3 PCR testing is available on all University of Maine System campuses to students, faculty and staff. Schedule an appointment via PointnClick.

Student vaccination guidance for summer and fall: Students who plan to study or participate in other in-person activities on UMaine and UMaine Machias campuses and at university facilities statewide in summer or fall 2022 must receive all recommended COVID-19 vaccines, including any booster dose(s) when eligible. In-person students must be “Up to Date” with COVID-19 vaccinations as defined by the CDC or have a UMS-approved exemption by the start of any semester for which the student will be in person, all documented in PointnClick.

Testing in the summer months: Proactive mandatory asymptomatic COVID-19 testing will be available on campus for in-person students, staff and faculty. The testing schedule will be available closer to the end of the semester.